How Dentists Can Treat Sleep Apnea
Many people don’t realize that there is a correlation between dental and general health, which is why dentists are often the first to find signs of certain inflammatory diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. One of the main general health concerns that dentists will catch and treat is sleep apnea. At Dr. Kenneth G. Edwards, DDS we can help lessen the symptoms of sleep apnea so you and your loved ones can get a better night’s sleep.
Sleep apnea is a disorder where the soft tissues in your mouth and throat, which naturally relax during the night while you sleep, block the airways in your throat causing breathing to stop periodically through the night. Most people don’t realize they have sleep apnea because they often won't fully wake up when breathing stops. The main symptoms of sleep apnea are tiredness when waking and throughout the day, snoring, and mood changes.
Treating Sleep Apnea
In most cases, a doctor will recommend a CPAP machine, which is connected to a mask that will help the patient to breathe during the night. Not only can this machine make patients uncomfortable but it can be noisy as well, making it hard to get to sleep. Which is why your dentist may be able to help treat sleep apnea without a CPAP machine.
Here at Dr. Kenneth G. Edwards, DDS, we provide patients who suffer from sleep apnea with a dental appliance. This dental appliance acts similarly to a mouth guard, but it pulls the bottom jaw forward in order to open up the airways, allowing you to breathe easier. This appliance helps reduce snoring and also prevents your tongue from sliding into the back of your throat. These appliances are customized for each patient to ensure that they fit comfortably and won't hinder one's ability to sleep.
Why Go to a Dentist?
Because sleep apnea affects the mouth and throat, it is important for your dentist to help treat and monitor this disorder. Dental appliances are also extremely helpful in treating the symptoms of sleep apnea. If you wake up tired or a loved one has complained about your snoring, please contact our office to schedule a consultation so we can see if you may be suffering from sleep apnea.